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Clan revival bid fails

Jone Kalouniviti
Monday, March 10, 2014

ESEROMA Tale Tivulu's 30-year long fight to have his extinct clan reinstated in the native land records and the Vola ni Kawa Bula has been declined and ruled as a closed case by the iTaukei Lands and Fisheries Commission.

But for Mr Tivulu, now 65 years old, the fight is not over — even though every door has been shut in his face.

He claims that his family clan Nalauvatu under the mataqali Weiulu in the yavusa Tukani in Nadi was ruled extinct during the early Lands Commission sitting at Narewa Village in 1913.

He says this was because both his grandfathers, Mesake Turuva and Filikesa Driu, were not present in the village at the time.

"Our grandfathers were both missionaries as young men in the Methodist Church and at that time were helping spread the gospel in Tailevu and Ra, so because of their long absence from the village, the sitting ruled that our clan was extinct in 1913," Mr Tale said.

In a letter to the commission in 2005, then president of the Methodist Church in Fiji Reverend Laisiasa Ratabacaca, said they had records of the brothers being on mission when the NLC sat at Narewa in 1913.

The case was also presented to the Prime Minister's Office in 2011 who then referred it to the iTaukei Lands and Fisheries Commission.

Commission chairman Vananalagi Vesikula said the attempts by Mr Tivulu to keep pursuing the matter had resulted in a gathering of the yavusa Tukani of Namotomoto in August 2012 where elders said they did not agree with the issue.

"The commission cannot reinstate the tokatoka Nalauvatu because records show the matter was sworn under oath in 1913 and also records show Mr Tivulu's grandfather was registered under the tokatoka Nasava, mataqali Weiulu, yavusa Tukani," Mr Vesikula said.

"The yavusa Tukani also disagreed with his claims thus this case is now closed."

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